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Sister Of The Dead by J. C. Hendee
Review by Nicki Lynch
Roc Mass Market  ISBN/ITEM#: 045146009X
Date: 30 January, 2005 List Price $7.50 Amazon US / Amazon UK / Show Official Info /

Sister Of The Dead, the third book of the Noble Dead series (the first was Dhampir and the second was Thief Of Lives), has Magiere still on a quest to discover what she is and her purpose in being a dhampir. Magiere is accompanied by half-elf Leesil, who is now her lover as well as business partner; Wynn, apprentice for the Belaskian branch of the guild of Sagecraft; and their dog, Chap, who is not exactly a dog. Magiere decides that to find out more about herself and her purpose for being ?created,? she needs to go back to her roots. She concludes she must return to her home land of Droevinka and the village where she grew up ? Chemest?k.

Wynn, at the request of the guild of Sagecraft, travels with Magiere and Leesil to add to the knowledge of the order and to escape the memory of the handsome Chane, who was her friend during her studies. When it was discovered he was one of the Noble Dead and probably caused the deaths of several people, Wynn rejected him.

Their dog, Chap, is not just a dog; but was Fay who gave up his immortality to bring Magiere and Leesil together for a yet unknown purpose. Wynn created a talking hide, a hide with letters and words, so Chap can communicate with them by pawing when he wants to. Chap doesn?t want Magiere and Leesil to travel into Droevinka, but he has no way of dissuading them.

Magiere and Leesil don?t want to take Wynn as it will be dangerous. But, she insists they will need her knowledge of languages and magic, as well as communication with Chap. So the band of travelers set off for the mysterious land of Magiere?s birth in hopes of finding some answers.

Magiere?s decision to travel home also disturbs Welstiel Massing, who was once her ally until she discovered he was one of the Noble Dead and wanted her for a concealed purpose. He and Chane have been clandestinely following Magiere and Leesil, hoping to guide her into her destiny of killing vampires. Chane is not happy to stay with Welstiel, but as long as Wynn stays with Magiere and Leesil, he is willing to follow them. He is in love with the apprentice sage and hopes to persuade her he?s not such a bad sort, even if he does kill to stay alive.

So Magiere, Leesil, Wynn, and Chap, followed during the night by Welstiel and Chane, travel to the dark and dank land of Droevinka and to Chemest?k, hoping to find some answers to her questions.

As in their last book Thief Of Lives, Sister Of The Dead also spends a great deal of time on the relationship between Magiere and Leesil, which tends to slow the story to almost a halt. This time the relationship between Wynn and Chane gets some time -- even though they are not traveling together. Sister of the Dead also spends a lot of time teasing the reader with all sorts of not-yet-revealed agendas by the various characters as well as exploring another part of the world created by the authors.

For the fans of the earlier books, Sister Of The Dead will not be a disappointment, as the plot moves along and we learn more about the Magiere the dhampir?s origins.

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